The Spiderwick Chronicles, if Stephen King had written them!
I approached this read tentatively. It's been many years since I've read a horror novel, although I used to read them all the time. I loved the early Stephen Kings, such as Christine, and Cujo. I needn't have worried. Once I'd read a couple of pages, it was like I'd put on a pair of old comfortable slippers.
Joe has a charming style of writing, which drew me in immediately...sorry, did I say drew? No, it grabbed me by the neck, changed the comfortable slippers for a pair of running shoes, and took me on a breakneck journey of such intensity I haven't read in years.
I found myself instantly drawn to the two main characters, Shawn and Jenny, and the young love developing between them. The plot twists are masterfully carried out, and he does a great job of showing, not telling along the way, as a lot of the details are left up to you to sit and wonder. And I did; even when not reading I found myself going over the tid-bits of history he sprinkles throughout the book.
While this is the first in a series, I'd say this book is strong enough to stand by itself. I will, of course, be reading the others. This guy is just too good a writer not to.